Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.24: Alex Ross

No.24: Alex Ross

Alex Ross is a comics painter and illustrator who brings the world of painting and fine art into his endeavours, offering work which is a cross between Norman Rockwell and George Pérez. He came to prominence thanks to his collaboration with Kurt Busiek on verite Marvel series Marvels back in 1994. Words: Joel Meadows…

Ross studied at the American Academy of Art in Chicago where he was exposed to artists like JC Leyendecker and surprisingly Salvador Dali, as he saw Dali’s ‘hyper-realistic approach’ not that different to comics art.

His first comic work was drawing mini series Terminator: The Burning Earth for Now Comics and he met his future collaborator Kurt Busiek on Marvels.

Ross saw a few drawbacks to his approach to Marvels, he admitted in an interview that Andrew Colman conducted with him in Image Comics book Studio Space: “Marvels kickstarted my career and definitely paved the way for many future projects, but the painted style suffered a few false starts before general acceptance – painted trading cards by talents such as Joe Jusko and The Hildebrandt Brothers were around at the time but had not gained widespread interest.”

The success of Marvels opened up a lot of doors for Ross which led to him collaborating with Busiek again and artist Brent Anderson as cover artist on Astro City, a superhero series which created a brand new world of originated superheroes for DC imprint Wildstorm.

Astro City led to him collaborating on Kingdom Come at DC in 1997, a series which posited a dark and dramatic future for the company’s most iconic figures like Batman, Superman and Wonder Woman.

Kingdom Come was a very big hit and Ross’s next work was Uncle Sam, a bold reimaging of the classic DC patriotic character with writer Steve Darnall for its Vertigo imprint.

Ross uses models to pose for his work and he does this for a very particular reason, he explained in the same interview with Colman in Studio Space: “I used models in Kingdom Come for my art because I needed the immediacy of real people to give it that edge.”

“Of course there are those who claim that that method makes the art look stiff, that despite the work being based on life it ironically appears lifeless. So I constantly have to tread that line between having that photographic quality and the animated look that all the best comic art is quite rightly respected for. What I have in common with Eagle artist Frank Bellamy, who used models, is what links me to the root of super-hero comics -the comic strip Flash Gordon. If you look at Alex Raymond’s work, he was also using live models for every Sunday strip. That was also true for Hal Foster on Prince Valiant, and you see the benefit in the work.”

Between 1998 and 2003, Ross worked with writer Paul Dini on creating four tabloid sized original editions celebrating anniversaries for four of their most recognisable superhero icons: Superman: Peace On Earth, Batman: War On Crime, Shazam!: Power of Hope and Wonder Woman: Spirit Of Truth. He also drew two Justice League tabloid one-offs again with Dini: Secret Origins and Liberty and Justice.

In the early 2000s, Ross plotted and designed characters for a trilogy of Marvel limited series with writer Jim Krueger: Earth X, Universe X and Paradise X which brought together characters from a cross section of the company’s time periods.

Since then, Ross has concentrated mainly on creating covers for a range of titles predominantly at DC and Marvel but he has also worked on projects like the 911 charity comic graphic novels that were co-published by Marvel and DC, art for M Night Shymalan’s Unbreakable DVD release and he has just created a cover for Ukraine charity comic project Comics for Ukraine: Sunflower Seeds.

Ross is an artist who lends widescreen drama to his illustrations, which are imbued with the spirit of comics while also bringing the essence of modern magazine masters to bear as well. His covers are instantly recognisable as his sense of composition and dramatic camera angles mark him out as one of the finest exponents of comic artistry. His heroic portrayals of the industry’s most iconic characters lends his work a real power and an impact.

Here’s links through to the other entries in our 101 Greatest so far as well

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.25: John Byrne

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.26: Mike Mignola

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.27: Basil Wolverton

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.28: Howard Chaykin

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.29: Moebius

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.30: Dave Gibbons

 

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.31: Creig Flessel

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.32: Milt Caniff

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.34: Burne Hogarth

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.35: LB Cole

 

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.37: Bill Everett

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.38: Robert Crumb

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.39: Mac Raboy

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.41: Jim Starlin

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.42: Mike Zeck

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.43: Adam Hughes

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.44: Daniel Clowes

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.45: Gene Colan

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.46: George Perez

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.47: Michael William Kaluta

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.48: Cary Nord

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.49: Frank Quitely

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.50: Mike Ploog

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.51: Johnny Craig

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.52: Darwyn Cooke

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.53: Steve Dillon

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.54: Gil Kane

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.55: Michael Zulli

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.56: John Romita

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.57: Joe Maneely

 

 

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.58: Marshall Rogers

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.59: John Severin

 

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.60: Alex Toth

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.61: Brian Bolland

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.62: David Mazzuchelli

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.63 Reed Crandall

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.64 Harry Anderson

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.65 Nick Cardy

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.66 Matt Wagner

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.67 Bryan Hitch

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.68 Shawn Martinbrough

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.69 Al Feldstein

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.70 Nestor Redondo

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.71 Tarpe Mills

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.72 Eduardo Risso

 

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.73 JH Williams III

 

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.74 Irv Novick

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.75 Dan Zolnerowich

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.76 Gilbert Shelton

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.77 Tommy Lee Edwards

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.78: Sean Phillips

 

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.79: Jose Luis Garcia-Lopez

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.80: Dan DeCarlo

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.81: Marie Severin

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.82: John Paul Leon

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.83: Jim Lee

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.84: Denys Cowan

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.85: Ross Andru

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.86: Paul Gustavson

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.87: George Evans

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.88: Michael Golden

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.89: Matt Baker

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.90: Todd McFarlane

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.91: Fiona Staples

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.92: Carl Barks

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.93: Carmine Infantino

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.94: Alan Davis

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.95: CC Beck

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.96: Syd Shores

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.97: Bob Fujitani

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.98: Tim Sale

Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.99: Jim Aparo

https://tripwiremagazine.co.uk/headlines/tripwires-101-greatest-comic-artists-of-all-time-no-100/

https://tripwiremagazine.co.uk/headlines/tripwires-101-greatest-comic-artists-of-all-time-no-101/

 

The post Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.24: Alex Ross appeared first on TRIPWIRE MAGAZINE.

No.24: Alex Ross Alex Ross is a comics painter and illustrator who brings the world of painting and fine art into his endeavours, offering work which is a cross between Norman Rockwell and George Pérez. He came to prominence thanks to his collaboration with Kurt Busiek on verite Marvel series Marvels back in 1994. Words: Joel Meadows…
The post Tripwire’s 101 Greatest Comic Artists Of All Time: No.24: Alex Ross appeared first on TRIPWIRE MAGAZINE.Read MoreTRIPWIRE MAGAZINE

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